I am heading off to travel in 9 days (wow, really only 9? How did that happen)
SE Asia for a bit under 3 months.
Started a new Blog http://flitterkit.blogspot.com/ Since LJ has been so unreliable.
Check it out there if you have interest of my meanderings and are not on the Travel email list. (it's just a bounce, so the exact same as the email so far)
Comments are off since I seem to be drowning in spam. Email me if you want to get a hold of me.
Not that I ever post on here anyway, or really did much, but now that my friends page is sadly sparse.. I have officially turned of the automatic payments on my paid account. Jan 28th I'll no longer have a paid account for the first time since 1998 or so.
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My life is pretty full these days, if you talk to me on a regular basis you probably know this, but I haven't been doing the big exciting trips as much lately, and really, that was mostly what I posted here about.
Mostly migrated with the hordes to Facebook, but as always, email is the best way to get a hold of me.
Friday October 30th - Phoenix, AZ Hung out with Ellen, Met her youngest. Had dinner at a chain restaurant, Chevy's?. (I forget which one, sorry). Talked and caught up. It has been way too long, 7 years?? After dinner met another couchsurfing person I have been talking with online and her girlfriend at a club. The conversation was fun, and the scenery was hilarious. Saw a 300lb woman "getting down" and other scary people. Then back to the house to sleep.
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Sat October 31st Halloween! Still in Phoenix, AZ. Afternoon of hanging with Ellen and family getting ready for t-o-treating. Sent off Jason and kiddies trick -o-treating while Ellen and I watched a terrible movie and answered the doorbell. Twice. One ten or so year old at 7:30, and 3 preteens around 8:15. Lots of candy left over, Yikes! Around 9:30 Jason and the kiddies got home, buckets overflowing with candy. :) After discussion of how wonderful the evening was, kids were tucked off to bed and I headed out to the Halloween party at the house I was staying at. The Halloween party was grand, there were homemade caramel apples and pumpkin soup! It was however, totally weird, we got rounded up and force :) marched 6 blocks away to a drainage tunnel under the freeway where we danced the night away to a punkgrass band under a hanging body. (stuffed).
Sunday Nov 1st - Lunch w/Ellen then drive to Corona, Ca. Booooring drive. Pho for dinner. Spring rolls (oh goodness good), shrimp soup.
Monday Nov 2nd - Breakfast out, French toast, bacon, sausage and eggs. Laundry day, wow did I need to do laundry, it was about to eat me aliiiiiiiiive. Hung out with the kitties, Cisca and Xanthe. Met J at work for her dinner time. The Corona Library is HUGE. Went out to Thai. Food ended up being much spicier than I was anticipating, but the rice dish was tasty. Didn't care for the flavor of the string bean dish. Sorry, don't remember what they were called. Delicious sticky rice for desert, with a weird custard on top. I scraped off the custard. ;)
Tuesday Nov 3rd. J off work! Breakfast/turned out to be lunch at a place in Riverside I got a chicken sausage foccacia sandwich with arugula, smoked Gouda, red bell pepper and tomato. It was supposed to have Dijon mustard, but they did the "wave it at the sandwich and pretend we did" thing. Afterwards we went wandering in and out of tons of fun little shops. I think it was 90 or so in the sun, it was way too hot. Back to the house via a grocery store. Then vegging with rummed up egg nog and movies. Dinner was delicious poached salmon with white wine and capers, sautéed green beans and mushrooms, and a wonderful salad. I felt all guilty, I was so jonesing after salad I barely ate any of the salmon, and it was delicious. Salad was grand. Red leaf lettuce, Grape tomatoes, avocado, carrots, sliced hearts of palm, and marinated artichoke hearts. Topped off with Newman original oil and vinegar dressing. Mmmmmm, perfect.
Wed Nov 4th.Packed up the car and said goodbye to the kitties, then lunch with Cookie. I think we were still in Corona, at a Seafood place that I forget the name of. I had Linguini with calms in a garlic butter? sauce. Delish.
Drove to North Hollywood for Dinner with my aunt. My uncle baked whatever that dish is with pounded chicken, red sauce and mozzarella. Along with an amazing salad with tomato, cucumber, avocado, green onions, mint and grape seed oil. And tasty cooked zucchini and baked potatoes. I was so full I thought I'd explode. After dinner, which was early, I was feeling restless so I decided to drive home, rather than wait for the morning. :) Thanks to several good friends, you know who you are, keeping me company on the phone, I arrived safely in Occidental a bit before 2am and crawled in with Justin and the cat.
Epic roadtrip. Now done. I'll post the last of the pictures later. Much later.
Saturday October 24th - My last full day in Nawlins. Took a walk in the morning around the neighborhood. The sun was out so I got a bunch more pictures of ironwork and neat doors. I have no idea what I am going to DO with all the photos if even 1/2 of them come out! Hopefully at least one photo of the tree across the way which is COVERED in Mardi Gras Beads turned out. I was having trouble having them show up in the pictures.
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After lunch Jess and I took a walk to the 1st Annual Magazine Street Blues Festival. :) Tiny little thing, but it was fun. We shared a cup of tasty tomato basil soup and a redfish and black bean taco, wandered through the few booths, then headed up Magazine Street. Magazine street is pretty much at that point a bunch of small shops, mostly antiques, but a few fun ones to wander in. One fun thing was we saw a random band playing on the porch of a clothing store. They weren't bad either. :) We successfully made it down to the Buffalo Exchange, though it was really crowded and neither of us found anything we couldn't live without. We were less successful finding a particular (or any) ice cream shop on the way back. Oh well.
Around 7:30 all three of us headed into the CBD Central Business DIstrict) to try and catch the Krewe du Boo Parade [http://holiday-entertaining.suite101.com/article.cfm/new_orleans_halloween_parade]. We ended up getting stopped in the car less than one block from the end of the route, so we parked the car (no one was going anywhere, we were at 2 one ways, both blocked in the "out" direction) and walked the block over to catch the rest of the parade. We saw almost all of it and the floats were totally fun. They also threw (and I mean lobbed them at you, watch your head style) beads and cups and other plastic crap. Since we were at the end, they threw lots of stuff. I am heading home with a good bunch of Mardi Gras beads to share around. It was fun and the music was wonderful.
Once the parade was done, we were able to move the car and went into the French Quarter to catch dinner at the Gumbo Shop [http://www.gumboshop.com/]. I had the Chicken Andouille Gumbo to start, I don't usually like Gumbo, since I don't usually like Okra, this one was really good, and the Okra wasn't either overwhelming or slimy.
For main I had a combination platter with Shrimp Creole (mmmm yum) Red Beans and Rice (very different from the previous one, but still tasty, more plain) and Crawfish Etouffee (which was not to my taste) It had almost a sweetness to it I didn't really feel for after all the semi spicy creole food I had been having. Maybe it was just that day, I don't know.
Then Joel and I split a bread pudding with Whiskey sauce (that was fantastic) for desert.
It was a nice ending note for my food in New Orleans.
Sunday October 25th was drive to Austin Texas day. Nothing much to say. Mostly flat. There was this insanely long (25 or 30 miles?) Causeway/raised road/bridge over the swamps out of New Orleans. There was a neat "swamp tour" boardwalk thing at the Texas welcome center. Though I didn't see the rumored alligator, there were cute turtles. Also very cool clouds over Houston. Maybe some of the pictures turned out.
Arrived in Austin around 6pm. Settled in with one of my CS hosts and talked for a while about travel, then went and got a sandwich at Thunder Subs. I got a Vegie Delight with Cheese and Roast beef. Totally huge and messy and great. Whole wheat sub, with avocado and Hummus, lettuce, sprouts, cucumber, mushrooms, olives, tomato and provolone and Roast beef. :) The sandwich guy gave me a kind of funny look when I asked for the RB on it, but made it for me anyway. Went after to a local Pub called The Draft House to get a beer. I didn't like any of the beers THEY made, but I ended up with a Texas made Pecan Porter by (512). It was delish. More talking about travel. They (my hosts) couchsurfed around Turkey earlier this year, and I am interested in how well it works overseas. Apparently well. Camille got off work around 9:30, and we all three talked for a long while, some of it outside enjoying the almost perfect weather at a local coffee shop. Totally awesome people.
Monday October 26th. Woke up to pouring rain. Today's plans for walking to the museum and around downtown will just have to be adjusted. Took a rain and thrift day. If you like to thrift, and you are ever in Austin, TX check out the Goodwill Blue Hanger stores. Outlet stores, with clothing in bins, $1.25 each piece. Takes a bit to sort through things, but I got lots of fun stuff.
Dinner was Texas Barbecue at Ruby's Barbecue! I got beef brisket with delicious barbecue sauce and a mustard potato salad (that kind of tasted like deviled eggs) and a vinaigrette coleslaw that I loved. Thanks Camille for the suggestion! Camille and William got Elgin sausage and let me try some. It was also very delicious, though not spicy though it was billed that way. Desert was Amy's Ice cream. Camille got a delicious pumpkin that I was very tempted by, but I ended up with the "shiner" (beer) one and a Kahlua/porter one.
Tuesday October 27th
Walked downtown to the Texas Museum. Wandered through the exhibits for about an hour, pretty interesting actually, then caught a show about Texas Weather that was fun. Then walked all the way downtown to 6th street, stopping in a few interesting shops, turned around, and walked back to the house, total walked was about 5 miles. Wheeee.
In the evening my hosts had a few friends of theirs join us for a wonderful Pumpkin carving party. Another CS'er who I had been talking to online joined us, and good food (sausages, chicken, and Turkish meatballs) and good beer was had by most.I picked up a few 6 packs of local beer at the grocery store when we went to get the pumpkins. 3 or each pack are going home with me to share around. Hopefully one of the photos of the carved pumpkins will turn out.
Wednesday October 28th. Drove to Silver City, NM. 13.5 hrs total on the road. 3 short breaks. Lots of open, boring space. Some neat weather over Houston, photos might have turned out. Nothing much else of note. Arrived In SC in time to eat dinner with my host. We went to a local brewing company and split a small pizza, as well as each had a frosty mug of their home brewed root beer. :) Hanging out and talking, then sleep. Oh, just a note, it was realllly cold once I got to New Mexico, apparently it had been snowing on and off all day.
Thursday October 29th. Silver City, NM. Woke up lateish (8am) thanks to a host who works downstairs of where she lives, so she could come back up to lock up when I finally made it out. :) Then after dressing in layers, I packed my stuff back in the car and walked downtown (1.5 blocks to main street) to explore. Wandered into and out of pretty much every open store on Main in an effort to stay warm. Couldn't resist a adorable sculpture made out of a old GMC truck hood and a packet of 5 old Harlequins for $.25. Had a fantastic lunch at Vicki's Eatery. Started with a mug of homemade hot apple cider. Then had a cup of the homemade chicken noodle soup (lots of chicken and broad noodles), and a grilled Havarti cheese sandwich on sourdough with grilled tomato added in. Totally delish and hit the spot. After lunch I discovered the small gallery area in downtown, and wandered in and out of galleries. Around 3, pretty much frozen solid. (it was in the High 20's, low 30's, with a nasty wind) I took my computer into a nearby coffee house that had free wifi. With a hot Chai in me I found a place to stay that night in Phoenix, (Thank you Q-Street) and headed out of town early. Brrrr.
5 hr drive to Phoenix. Some pretty sky shots, I hope they come out, a incredible long sunset (Driving west!) and not much else. It was dark for over 1/2 of the drive. Arrived, was fed dinner of beans, rice and baked pumpkin w/apple. Good. Tired. Bed on a comfy futon.
Friday next time.
Woke this morning with my legs still sore, not sure how much walking I will do. The Sun however just stuck it's head out.. I may have to take the camera out, regardless. Most of my shots so far have been under cloudy skies. Tasty Honeycrisp Apple for breakfast.
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Decided to stay in and play with the computer in favor of sore legs and realizing 1, I was planing to walk several miles in the afternoon, and 2 I still hadn't heard back from my next stop, (Austin, TX) on whether I had a place to stay!
After noon Jess got home, then we all mustered out of the house to head to the French quarter. Wandering through shops filled with all kind of odds and ends ensued. Watched Joel try on a multitude of different hats, but none that were perfect. Oh well. I picked up 2 presents for others and a pretty rhinestone fleur-de-lis necklace for me. I am wearing it now and it makes me happy. I saw another set of purple and green (Mardi gras colors) that I am still thinking of, and possibly a painting that is stuck in my head. You know when you see something, and think.. wow, I really want to own that.. Well I probably won't go back and get either of them, but we will see. I only have tomorrow before I head out. J&J indulged me and we stopped at Cafe Du Monde and I got a Cafe o'lait and the Beignets. Oh my goodness was there a lot of powdered sugar! Totally fun to eat, and actually pretty tasty for fried dough. I couldn't really taste the difference that the "chicory" made in the coffee. It just tasted like somewhat bitter coffee to me. I was hoping for a distinct flavor. Oh well. Now at least I can say I did it, and I even have a picture to prove it thanks to Jess.
After coffee we took a walk along the river up to canal street, then wandered back to the car via Royal Avenue, again stopping in a few neat shops. 3 miles+ total walked. Such a fun experience.
Now checking email and things to do in Austin before going to bed. It's actually turning into an early night somehow. And yes, I did hear back from Austin! Place to stay confirmed.
Talk to you all again soon!
Went on that walk after all. Beautiful houses along Saint Charles Street. Camera utter fail for night shots. None of the pictures came out. Then bed on a very comfy futon.
Oct 22nd - Wandered to city park. Drove around it, then went and walked around the Botanical gardens. Very nicely laid out, the flowers were pretty much finished for the season, but I think I got a few nice shots anyway. It wasn't all that hot, but the humidity was climbing. After I saw the whole of the gardens I wandered to the New Orleans Art Museum [http://www.noma.org] and looked around in the blessed air conditioning. Nice collection. It seemed a bit small to me compared to what I was expecting, but it was laid out nicely, and the ceramics/glass exhibit, as well as the Fabergé exhibit were awesome. Mostly, it was nice to get out of the warm and sticky.
Back at the house I worked the cramps out of my calves.. I had been walking park + Gardens + Museum for over 2.5 hrs!
After lunch at a nearby Indian buffet place (tasty) I walked up Saint Charles place to a library I wanted to check out. The Milton H. Latter Memorial Library is located in an old mansion, and still has a few rooms decorated to fit the house where you can just sit and chill. Totally cool. I wasn't able to take pictures of inside, but the ceilings in the downstairs front rooms were amazing. Took many pictures of pretty houses and awesome iornwork railings and such on the walk back to the house. It started raining a bit after I got back with lightening and thunder. Wonderful to listen to when you are inside and dry!
Dinner Rabbit and Sausage Jambalaya from Coops Place in the French Quarter. I got the Supreme. It was a bit smoky because of the Tasso but delicious. they only gave me a small bowl, and I still took a third of it home for lunch today.
A traditional Creole rice dish, simmared with tomatoes, onion, bell pepper, local seasonings, boneless rabbit, and smoked pork sausage. We add shrimp, crayfish and tasso (Cajun seasoning ham) to make it Supreme.
There is a grand review of the dish here
I am trying to catch all the "traditional" foods before I go. We will see how well I manage!
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Short and sweet to catch me up. I probably won't get around to expanding. Maybe later. Here's hoping.
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Oct 8th drove from Boston to NJ - Cousin Robyn and Kids. Yummy pizza. Hanging with Maddy. Sleep.
Oct 9th more NJ - Robbie and visiting the beach (photo when I have comp), Then cousins Mark and Jacquie - temple not my cup of tea. Harry and Mei though were a joy.
Oct 10th NY/Philly - JoAnne's party in NY wonderful seeing family. Visiting with Sheila and Jim and the dogs (and cat) in Philly. Hot tub ad fantastic company, got a bunch of grand new music.
Oct 11th - Richmond, VA - Couch surf with heather and her hubby to be, really nice, wonderful kitties, home spiced cider. Comfy couch.
October 12th - Charleston - Elizabeth! Pretty houses along the battery, eating at the laughing oyster, she crab soup, fried calamari, pasta with shrimp, scallops, fish in cream sauce, . Havoc and Mischief (photos on Facebook)
October 13th - Orlando - New Camera purchased. ouch. Not all that thrilled with it, but I guess there has to be an adjustment period. *sigh* Good sushi. Mellow evening of beer and watching a movie. [oh god, it's over 80 degrees at night and humid.. I remember why I dislike FLA]
October 14th and 15th Boynton Beach - Family! arrival, lunch, laundry, boat cruise along the intercoastal, beautiful OMG houses. :) Still adjusting to the new camera. Italian food. Only so so. Morty's birthday. Girrls? a strawberry farm in a tiny looking building with a menagerie out back and candy store inside. Cocktails and snacks with relatives by marriage, then LOBSTER. Oh Yum! [yay air conditioning]
October 16th - Bagel and cream cheese and lox for breakfast. :) Drove to Lakeland, FL to meet with an online friend for the first time and trade ebooks. Yay more books! I might have enough to tide me over for a while. Current count is over 10,000
[The weather is cooling down, thank goodness!]
October 17th and 18th. Saftey Harbor FL - Hapenchance finally LA Hardy preformed at a comedy club NEAR WHERE I WAS, wonderful awesome and I was thrilled I got to introduce my uncle to the fun as well.(we have been missing each other by days several times now) Walk on the beach with Uncle and dinner was a pasta dish with fresh tomatoes, sautéed mushrooms and onions and zucchini, with lots of garlic and some olive oil. Delish!
October 19th - Destin FL, [Central time, confused me!] Couchsurfing with Hippiepilot. Dinner of a tasty burrito and sunset on the beach. Played with camera. Weather's cool and clear.
October 20th - New Orleans. Arrived at 9:30 pm. Dinner with Natalia and Andrew [Couchsurf] of home topped pizza. Tasty. Then watched Natalia paint (oils) till I couldn't keep my eyes open.
October 21st - Wandered around Audubon drive a bit taking photos, battery died. Switched to Couchsurf with Joel and Jessica. Charged battery. Then late lunch at Sammy's. We three shared grilled redfish with potato salad and cornbread dressing as sides, and red beans and rice with sausage. Both good. The red beans weren't what I was expecting, an odd flavor I decided I like, but it took a few bites. The fish was good, has a sauce with shrimps on it, tasted like fish. *shrugs* good fish, but nothing unusual. Still, overall tasty. Oh.. the cornbread dressing was really good, it had sausage and other stuff in it. It looks like being a vegetarian here would be hard. Walked off Lunch walking the French Quarter from one end to the other. Took a few photos. I'll upload eventually after I sort, etc. The iron work was incredible intricate. on the balconies and fences and railings. Was pretty quiet, and not crowded. I don't know, but I expected the Quarter to be different. We walked by Cafe du Mond, and it looked all small and ordinary. I guess I had this big expectation in my head. Oh well. It is all still pretty. Oki Nago a Japanese Seafood buffet for dinner. It was delicious tons of sushi and shashimi plus tons of other things, but I am now officially too stuffed to move. Ugh. I think we are going to go try to walk some of it off shortly then I'll go thunk.
Tomorrow I plan on walking around city park and perhaps seeing the Art Museam. However right NOW. I am caught up. :P
I'll try to be better.. but really.. perhaps not.
After New Orleans, Austin Texas, then Silver City, NM, then Phoenix, AZ, then Los Angeles, then home!
So before I get into Boston and the wonderful week that was, I have to tell you of a tragedy.
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My beloved little olympus digital camera has died. It not longer is able to judge exposure and over exposes everything, and there is no way I have found to fix or compensate for it. In light of this, after much angst and trial and error to get it to work, I have purchased a new camera. No pictures attached to this post, though in a few days I might get them up on Facebook. And possibly none for a while as I get used to the new camera. Bah.
Arrived in the Boston area latish Thursday night, in time to pick Theresa up from work at the flying trapeze rig in Reading, MA. It is INSIDE a "Joardan's Furniture" along with a water/light show, Imax movie theater, RIchardson's ice cream and candy shop. Even though I didn't fly this trip, still not sure of the health of my shoulder, it is tons of fun to watch other people fly.
If you are in the Boston area and want to see awesome Trapeze work, the Boston Staff Show is on the 25th. (Beantown you get to see MY friends fly! They will be all in gold!) http://boston.trapezeschool.com/ Or take a class and fly yourself!
Friday morning Theresa and I had breakfast at a diner, then walked a bit around Wakefield before I took the commuter rail and T into Boston proper to hang out with Emily! Yay! It was awesome, we walked from her apartment along a portion of the freedom trail and since Em is a history buff, I pretty much had my own personal tour guide. One who could be convinced to have gelato before lunch. ;) The gelato was good, nice flavor, even though the tiramisu one had chunks of a cookie like thing that tasted of soggy bread in it. I didn't eat that part. Lunch was at a pub, and while my lobster was tasty, they got negative points on service, it took forever to get the food, and the clam chowder wasn't very good. There is NO excuse n New England to have bad clam chowder. None. Walked my feet sore, but saw a bunch of neat things, wandered through a farmers market and picked up inexpensive veggies, and headed back to the apartment to rest a bit. Em made homemade gourmet pizza for dinner, that almost was a no go when the cheese turned out to be bad, but Heather saved the day going down to the corner market and getting more cheese. Final result, Pizza with fresh basil and Roma tomatoes and capers was delicious! After dinner, we all headed out to a place that Zagat rated highly for desert.. I think my food Karma was just off for the day. The Bread pudding was at least tasty, but I almost missed my train home because they took so long. Ugh. Still it was fun hanging out. And I DID catch the train.
It rained Sat and I took a "rain" day. Stayed in and played on the computer (got the previous posts out) and played a bit with Photos. Dinner when T got home at the local pub. I got delicious (redeemed!) clam chowder and a salad. They had homemade Irish soda bread they brought to the table that was fantastic. T's Spinach salad was missing the candied pecans (they were listed on the menu, it's not like we were expecting them unduly)
Sunday lazy day as well, Finally got motivated and met T at work at 4ish. We went to get linner of Pizza, very yummy "special" with good stuff on it. I can't remember. what So sorry. After dinner, Theresa had staff fly, and I headed out to my next home in Boston with Alec and Brisket! Yay Alec. Thanks for having me. Alec had the leftover Pizza, then later that evening he made couscous with sausage. It was tasty.
Monday I spent a few hours wandering through the local goodwill. Fun, fun, fun. Apple (honeycrisp) and garlic hummus (from TJ's) and Pita chips for lunch. Dinner unexpectedly was homemade borscht, sauteed greens, and sauteed hen-o-the woods mushrooms. We headed over to meet some friend of A's that lived down the street, with the intention of getting barbecue afterwards. We stayed late and watched Top Gun and were fed and never DID make it to the barbecue place. But the new friends are awesome and the mushrooms (my favorite) were much better than barbecue. At least in my opinion. :)
Tues we met Crystal, one of the new friends from the night before, for breakfast at a hippie-esq place, Clear Conscience Cafe, where I got a chai and a bagel with cream cheese.. or was that cream cheese with bagel? the proportions were equal. 1/2 inch bagel, 1/2 inch cream cheese. Good thing I like cream cheese. Em met us after breakfast and Alec she and I wandered around trying to go shopping. The stores we wanted weren't open, despite their signs saying they were supposed to be! After walking back and forth the 3 blocks between the two stores several times, Indian food was had by Em and Alec, who hadn't had breakfast. I still wasn't hungry though it did smell tasty. After Em left, Alec and I wandered, still waiting for the other stores, into a goodwill where I scored a fabulous REI rain jacket. (this will be important later, trust me). We then FINALLY found our target stores open, they had what I wanted, and we walked back to the house about 2 and a half miles. We took the scenic way through some of Harvard college. Detouring through a neat little exhibit of scientific stuff in the science building, along with the Mach 1 computer. The trees were looking pretty and we passed an awesome playground with this huge net like climbing structure. I restrained myself from climbing on it since it was swarming with kids. For dinner Heather met us at a local pub called Christopher's [http://www.christopherscambridge.com/home-flash.html]. I got a chocolate porter which was good but not great, and a fantastic hamburger. Wow. Huge and delicious. I got the ENGLISH BURGER Coleman natural beef burger marinated in ale and grilled, with cheddar and Applewood smoked bacon, served on a large English muffin. It was exactly what I wanted and totally hit the spot. The good company just topped off a grand day.
Wed. Wandered around with Crystal. Fantastic breakfast at Sound Bytes [http://www.soundbitesrestaurant.com/] We shared 2 of the specials, a pear and goat cheese stuffed french toast with real maple syrup, and a smoked salmon and avocado eggs benedict. They were both really fantastic. More wandering, and chatting, and hanging out ensued. Dinner was tasty meat stuffs that Alec made. I have no idea what it was but it was yum. :)
Thurs morning I went back to Emily's for breakfast and final hanging out before I left. She made me abelskiver for breakfast. It is essentially danish donut holes? Or at least that is what it looks like. :) Tasty. Then back to Alec's to pack up, and off back to NJ. Wheeee...
Monday morning (Sept 28th) I lazed about a bit, then headed out, first briefly stopping to meet some online friend in person for the first time. Totally got sucked into conversation and it was horribly hard to leave!
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Long drive to Oshawa. Pretty much no traffic though for the win. There were all these signs on the highway about how over 50k over the speed limit is a min $10,000 fine for street racing. That said, most everyone went at least 20 to 30k over the 100k posted limit. I was only going 120k, and being passed by big rigs.
Arrived in Oshawa to dinner of roast chicken and noodles with Canadian cheese. Nice and tasty and filling and the company was superb! Jagatha (sp?) is just as soft and friendly as I remember from last time. She spent inordinate amounts of time on my bed, snuggling up with my jacket and slept with me at least part of the night every night I was there.
Tues was a veg day, hanging out with Brent and Suzie and Jag of course. Brent made Poached Eggs for breakfast with bacon and toast. I forgot how good and easy poached eggs are. :) Or maybe Brent just made it LOOK easy. Afternoon, Suzie and I headed to their Gym, where I got to swim about 1.5 laps in the pool before getting distracted by the water slide. How cool is that!! A few times down it and Suz and I relaxed in the hot tub thing and chatted for a while, then steam room (for a few minutes, I can't stay still that long) to complete the "spa" treatment and back to the house, where Brent made a delicious steak salad. The steak was absolutely perfectly cooked. Mmmmm Oh, random Chocolate martini in the afternoon for the win. I had never had one before and it was interesting and tasty.
Wed morning I headed to Toronto to visit with a Zara. After hitting lovely traffic (WTF it was 10:15 in the morning!!!) it took me a lot longer to get there than I expected. She made delicious Chive/Truffle oil crepes with a Leek, Mushroom, Chicken, spinach and garlic in cream, brie, and Parmesan sauce filling. Oh goodness.
After "Brunch" We wandered to the Laurence market and sampled our way though. It is a lot more like the foreign markets I saw in Spain and France, than the US flea markets/Farmers markets, with food and non food, and rather permanent setups. Top floor is meat, fish, cheese (I loved the chedar with Guinness in it), wine (local) and mustard. (yummy) also cooking supplies/Kitchen ware. Understory was clothing, jewelry, smoked fish/caviar, tea, and fresh veggies, and also something that looked like a small convenience store. (there was cooked food on both floors).
Hideous traffic again heading back out to Oshawa. Toronto traffic apparently just always sucks. Dinner was tomato soup and grilled cheese. We started a movie, and I gave up halfway to go to bed.
Thurs (Oct 1st) after breakfast and Brent being a totalllllly awesome person and rotating my tires, I headed out to Boston and T! Long drive, nothing particularly notable about it.
"The Big Read reckons that the average adult has only read 6 of the top 100 books they've printed."
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1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Bah Humbug [Italicize those you love.]
3) More bah humbug [Underline the books you intend to read.]
4) Reprint this list in your own LJ so we can try and track down these people who've read 6 and force books upon them ;-)
( Cut because I don"t want my friends to kill meCollapse )
I am contemplating taking a trip this summer out of the USA. I have to be back by July 11th, so that I can go to JJ's bridal shower. (being a bridesmaid, she'd smack me if I missed it).
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I am not too fond of either tourists or insane heat, however I have been contemplating several trips to South America with Intrepid Travel. The following 3 trips are my short list of choices.
I need to make a decision by the end of the week if I am going to take one of these. (if anyone else has a practical idea of somewhere else to go, not of these trips, I am happy to hear it, but specifics please, not "you should go to New Zealand")
What do you all think??
Trips in order of current preference.
Southern Adventure - La Paz to Rio
Duration: 26 days (La Paz to Rio de Janeiro)
Highlights: Immerse in the colour of La Paz, Experience the surreal landscapes of Salar de Uyuni, Wander through Sucre's whitewashed streets, Explore the vast Pantanal wetlands, Discover underground caves in Bonito, Hear the deafening roar of Iguazu Falls, Chill-out on an island getaway, Samba with Rio locals
( Detailed itinerary under cutCollapse )
Buenos Aires to Rio overland
19 days (Buenos Aires to Rio de Janeiro)
Sip espresso in sophisticated Buenos Aires, Marvel at the mighty Iguazu Falls, Peruse the ruins of San Ignacio Mini, Snorkel through Bonito’s caves, Spot a wealth of wildlife in the wetlands of the Pantanal, Stroll Paraty's colonial cobblestone streets, Sail through the blissful Bay of Paraty, Experience the rhythm and colour of Rio de Janeiro
( Detailed itinerary under cutCollapse )
A Taste of Patagonia
13 days (Santiago to Buenos Aires)
Highlights: Get up-close to smouldering Villarrica Volcano, Experience the wild beauty of Puerto Varas, Relax amid the scenic surrounds of Lago Llanquihue, Journey through the Andes to Argentina's Lake District, Be enchanted by the Latin passion of Buenos Aires
( Detailed itinerary under cutCollapse )
The King County Library System (where my mother lives) has a 100 item checkout limit..
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Maybe I SHOULD move up here. :)
The first five people to respond to this post will get something made by me! (keep in mind it is likey to be beaded, so if you don't wear earrings, please note that!)
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This offer does have some restrictions and limitations:
- You might not like it.
- However, it will be just for you.
- It'll be done well within this year.
- I won't tell you what it is. You might get a story, a poem, a drawing, a painting, cookies, or a piece of jewelry (though you can specify a color and I might take it into consideration if I decide to do jewelry).
- I probably won't do anything I would find too terribly strange, but you never know.
The catch is that you have to repost this and do it for other people. It's like a chain letter, but way cooler.
SO I am not completely horrified.. on the other hand. I'll very much miss my friends page.
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That being said, can you all make sure I have you Somewhere Else?? Either Email (preferred) or Facebook or Myspace.. just something in case this all disappears all the sudden. :)
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I again have a phone. However, I still don't have any numbers I got in the last few months due to not being able to get my old phone working again yet. :(
Happy New Year everyone! Hope you were all safe and had a wonderful time!
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Special for 2009..
my cell phone conspired to not see in it's 5th New Years by joining in the
festivities New Years Eve and jumping into the hot tub a bit before
midnight. Guess it couldn't stand the thought of more abuse. :)
On the convenient side, a friend (thank you John!!!) just gave me their old
phone 2 weeks ago, so I should be able to just plug in my card and go.
1. cannot figure out how to get off the back of the new phone yet, to put in
my card (it's a Samsung with a tiny keyboard thing, any suggestions?)
2. Had more numbers in the old phone than the card would hold, so have
effectively (unless resurrection is possible, and the jury's still out on
that) lost all new numbers I have gotten since June or so.
3. In the meantime, have no phone. I'll try to be checking messages when I
can, but please make sure to leave your number so I can call you back if you
leave a message!
Wheeee.. at least there was hot water and lots of alchol and great friends.
Hugs to you all
P.S. This especially means the people I met at House Hotting V. I won't have
any of your numbers now.. Nat? Parker? Monica?
I got this from priscillapuck, among others. Due to the huge amount of these I have seen I changed the rules.
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The ones I've HAVE NOT seen are in bold.
Wow I may have seen too many movies.
( Scary under cutCollapse )
I find myself in need of more things to go on my bucket list, having completed most of the things on my previous one.
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The old one (with items checked off) is below (with some new additions). Help by suggesting new things to add.
Learn to drive a stick shift car [done]
Travel to Europe [seen all but England/Ireland/Scotland]
run off the side of a mountain/cliff (para-sailing or hang-gliding) [done, paragliding]
Eat something I don't recognize, and don't know what it is before eating (or after) [done, France, Italy, Spain, AND Czech Republic]
See the great wall of china
See the Grand Canyon [done]
Dive [done, Bahamas]
Snorkel [done, Bahamas, Portugal]
Do a high jump into water from a cliff (yes I watch too many movies, why do you ask) [done, Portugal, Switzerland]
Learn to shoot a gun
Learn a second language fluently[still in progress, stalled]
Go to a live outdoor concert [done, Switzerland]
Learn to snowboard [done]
Learn to Rock climb [done]
Go on an overnight train ride [done, Barcelona to Portugal and Portugal to Paris]
Snowboard in at least 2 other countries
Have a sari made for me in India
Dive at the great barrier reef
Get Dive certified
Live in another country for at least 3 months
See the Himalayas up close and personal
Volunteer in another country
See every country in the world (why not)
So I am doing an early Thanksgiving post, since tomorrow I will be away from a computer likely for the entire day.
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We are going up to Camino Island to have the day with my Aunt and Uncle at my Aunt's place. Mother and I are bringing Mashed potatoes and Cauliflower soup. Both of which we are making today and will reheat tomorrow. Well we have pretty much finished the soup and it is delicious, so I figured I would share it with you.
If for some reason someone out there doesn't know how to make great mashed potatoes and wants THAT recipe, let me know, but basically.. (the trick is add more butter)
But without further ado.. ( Cream of Cauliflower SoupCollapse )
-Heading up to spend the Turkey Day holiday with my mother! I'll be driving up Monday the 24th and coming back on the 1st.
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-Price of gas has gone down so that it wasn't much over $20 to fill my tank yesterday!
-This means it will cost about $125 in gas there and back to Seattle! Woot!
-No news on the job front. Still procrastinating
-No news on the moving/relocating front either.. much MORE procrastinating
-Still not dead. Wheee